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What Policy Holders Need to Understand About Insurance Companies

May 10, 2018

“The insurance companies are not looking out for these folk’s best interests,” explained David D. Larson Jr., a 20 year veteran in the personal injury field and Of Counsel at The Paynter Law Firm located in Hillsborough, North Carolina. “Insurance companies are concerned with making money and paying less on claims.” This profit motivation of insurance companies is at odds with the needs of people who have been injured and were not at fault.

And Larson knows the insurance law system better than most. After graduating from the University of Wyoming College of Law with a J.D., he worked for the insurance companies, defending them against claims. But that experience prompted him to start his own law firm just two years later, “I have always wanted to serve, and serving victims has been my calling ever since.”

Conflict of interest between two parties is a problem as old as civilization itself, and has been famously summed up by the billionaire Warren Buffett “never ask a barber if you need a haircut.” But unlike a haircut, the stakes after a major injury are of life-changing proportions.

“People see the advertisements where the insurance companies are saying that they are there for customers. They want people to think that they are out for the good of the person filing the claim, but they are not, they just are not.” Larson has been behind the scenes of how the insurance industry operates, and his unique experience has shed light on the motivations of insurance companies; because for a brief moment, he represented them.

“I have been working in personal injury law for a long time, and I worked for law firms that represented insurance companies for two years. I did not work there long, but long enough to learn their tricks and see the racket they operate.” According to Larson, insurance companies employ an arsenal of tactics to manipulate claim filers into giving information that hurts their case. “Most people have no idea how the system works regarding injury,” this honest naivete of the injured person is prime ground for insurance companies to use decades of experience to pay as little as possible to the injured person”.

“When I talk to prospective clients on the phone, the most common emotion is that they are scared they are going to mess up the claim, that they are going to do something wrong that will harm their chance of recovery,” Larson explained further. “Often people are being repeatedly contacted by the insurance company, they are being sent a medical release, and unrepresented people are at the highest risk.” The tactics employed are often similar to the “good cop, bad cop” routine played out on crime TV shows. “The insurance companies try to be nice to you; they try to get you to make statements and sign releases that legally people do not have to give. And they are fishing for statements from injured persons that will hurt that person’s case.” All under the guise of being friendly.

But at the same time, there are tactics such as false deadlines that pressure an injured person. “Often letters will be sent saying the insurance company needs a signed medical release. Otherwise, they threaten they ‘will close your file if they do not receive this information.’ “Larson states that other tactics involved, include over use of the phrase ‘If you want to be paid, you have to do these things.’ In reality people do not have to, and in most cases should not do, these tasks that insurance companies are asking them to do as it weakens their case.” A conversation with Larson gives injured persons a guide to the law and the rights of people injured. “When clients and I sit down for the first time and talk, we are developing a relationship, a foundation of trust that has to last over time.” For Larson, service to people whose life has been disrupted is why he got into law. “I help people like my own family.”

Larson highlights that insurance companies are nefarious organizations, but their profit motivations stands at odds with those injured, and the less money they pay out to claims, the more profit they make. Larson has been deeply involved in the business for 20 years, and his experience plus reputation helps his clients navigate the path to recovery.

Filing an insurance claim or a lawsuit after a serious injury may seem complex and tedious, but contacting David Larson and The Paynter Law Firm is perhaps the most important step an injured person can take on the road to recovery, a step that should never be skipped.